Low Carb vs Keto – What's Ideal for Women?

blog you tube Mar 05, 2024
Graphic with a photo of Lesya with Low Carb and Keto text on her sides

Are you Confused about whether to go low carb or embrace the ketogenic lifestyle? 

Which one is going to give you the best results? Which one is better for women? 

By the end of this video, you'll have a clear understanding of the distinctions between low carb and keto, allowing you to choose the approach that aligns best with your goals and lifestyle.

Defining Low Carb

Let’s start with a low carb diet. 

Let's define what exactly a low carb diet is.

Put simply, a low carb diet is one that restricts the intake of carbohydrates, such as grains, sugar, and starchy foods. 

A low carb diet offers a wide range of options and allows for flexibility. 

You can still all sorts of fruits and vegetables which is not the case with keto.

If you're a busy mom juggling work, meetings, and taking care of your family a low carb diet can fit seamlessly into your lifestyle.

With a low carb approach, you can enjoy a variety of delicious foods like proteins along with a colorful array of non-starchy vegetables, fruits, and healthy fats like avocados, nuts, and olive oil.

The beauty of a low carb diet is that it's customizable to your preferences and dietary needs. 

You don’t really need to keep your carbs within a certain range to ensure you’re in ketosis and there’s a lot of freedom and wiggle room with low carb living.

Understanding Keto

Keto, short for ketogenic, is a diet that focuses on achieving a metabolic state called ketosis. 

Unlike a traditional diet, keto is more than just a temporary eating plan; it's a lifestyle that aims to shift your body's primary fuel source from carbohydrates to fat.

The key principle of the keto diet is to consume high amounts of healthy fats, moderate protein, and restrict carbohydrates to a minimum. 

By doing so, the body enters a state of ketosis, where it starts burning fat for fuel instead of relying on glucose derived from carbs. 

This metabolic shift can lead to numerous potential benefits.

One of the major advantages of the keto diet is its ability to promote weight loss. 

When you limit your carbohydrate intake, your body depletes its glycogen stores and starts tapping into fat reserves for energy. 

It’s important to note that you can also achieve weight loss by following a low-carb diet.

In addition to weight loss, the keto diet has been shown to enhance mental clarity and focus, as well as provide a steady and sustained energy level throughout the day. 

This is where keto really shines compared to low-carb diets. 

When you’re brain uses ketones for fuel, you feel like Bradley Cooper in Limitless. 

It’s a pretty cool feeling.

Not to mention, the keto diet may have positive effects on managing certain health conditions. 

Research suggests that it can improve insulin sensitivity, making it beneficial for individuals with type 2 diabetes or prediabetes. 

It may also help in reducing inflammation in the body and improving markers of heart health, such as cholesterol levels.

Comparing Macronutrient Ratios

Let’s talk about the macronutrient differences between a low carb and keto diet.

When it comes to low carb, the macronutrient distribution more balanced

Here's the breakdown:

Protein -About 30-35% of your total daily calories can come from protein

Fats-Another 20-35% of your daily calories should come from healthy fats

Carbohydrates- The remaining 45-65% of your calories can come from carbohydrates. 

These are like your versatile allies, offering a range of options from colorful veggies & fruits.

Now, let's switch gears to  keto where the macronutrient ratios are more specific, creating a unique metabolic environment for fat burning:

Protein : Protein takes up about 20% of your daily calories. 

These are traditional keto macros and I don’t necessarily agree with this macro rule. 

For my female clients I always advise no less than 30% for Protein.

Fats : 70-75%, of your calories come from healthy fats.

In keto, fats become the primary source of fuel. 

Carbohydrates: Carbs play a minimal role, constituting only about 5-10% of your daily calories. 

These carbs will mainly come from non-starchy vegetables and low carb fruits such as berries and avocados

Please note that these macros are general and not specific to you and your goals. 

If you want a customized plan with custom macros, this is something I offer in my coaching program. 

Book a call with me and we can discuss the details. 

Suitability for Different Lifestyles

Let’s talk about the suitability of low carb and keto diets for different lifestyles, taking into account factors like sustainability, social aspects, and personal preferences. 

As career-driven moms, we face unique challenges and responsibilities, making it crucial to choose a dietary approach that aligns with our needs and goals.

Sustainability plays a significant role in our fast-paced lives. 

Low carb diets offer flexibility and a wide range of food choices. 

This flexibility makes it easier to sustain in the long run, ensuring that you can enjoy meals with your family, attend social events, and maintain a healthy work-life balance.

On the other hand, the keto diet requires a more dedicated approach.

Achieving and maintaining a state of ketosis demands strict adherence to a high-fat, low-carb intake. 

This can be challenging, especially when faced with social situations involving carb-heavy foods. 

As career-driven moms, we often find ourselves attending work-related events, networking dinners, or celebrations. 

Following a strict keto diet in such situations may require careful planning, communication, and flexibility. 

It's important to evaluate whether the demands of a keto lifestyle align with your social commitments and personal preferences.

Both approaches have their merits, and it's essential to choose the one that resonates with your preferences and helps you achieve your health and wellness goals.

Potential Pitfalls and Success Tips

Now discuss common pitfalls associated with each approach.

One common challenge is managing cravings. 

This is more pronounced when you’re following keto vs low carb.

Whether it's the allure of a freshly baked pastry or the aroma of a pizza, cravings can test our willpower. 

For low carb enthusiasts, finding healthier alternatives like low carb desserts or satisfying your sweet tooth with fruits can help curb cravings. 

For keto followers, incorporating more healthy fats into meals can help keep you satiated and reduce cravings.

Another hurdle is navigating social situations. 

Attending parties or dining out can make it tempting to stray from your chosen dietary path. 

Low carb is easier than keto when it comes to social situations but you can make both work.

To overcome this, plan ahead by checking menus in advance or bringing a low carb or keto-friendly dish to share. 

Remember, it's okay to politely decline foods that don't align with your goals. 

The biggest challenge of all in my opinion is long-term adherence.

Long-term adherence is key to achieving lasting results. 

It's important to find ways to make your chosen approach sustainable. 

So, Which One is Ideal for Women? 

I have personally explored both of these different dietary approaches and have come to the conclusion that a low carb or cyclical ketogenic approach is more ideal for women than keto on it’s own. 

This is not only because it is more sustainable in the long term, but also because long-term keto can have an impact on our delicate female hormones.

One of the primary reasons why I believe a low carb or carb cycling strategy is better for women is because strict keto can potentially disrupt our hormonal balance. 

Women are more sensitive to changes in their hormone levels, and prolonged periods of carb restriction can lead to imbalances in estrogen and cortisol levels.

By incorporating a moderate amount of healthy carbohydrates into our diet through a low carb or carb cycling approach, we can provide our bodies with the necessary fuel while still reaping the benefits of a reduced carbohydrate intake.

In addition to the hormonal considerations, another reason why I advocate for a low carb or carb cycling strategy is the long-term sustainability it offers. 

Strict keto can be quite restrictive, making it challenging to maintain over extended periods.

It requires meticulous tracking of macronutrients and can limit food choices, which can be particularly challenging when navigating social situations or when craving certain foods. 

By adopting a more flexible approach that allows for a moderate intake of carbohydrates, we can still enjoy a wide variety of foods while achieving our health and weight management goals.

Low carb or carb cycling can be particularly beneficial for women who are physically active or engage in regular exercise. 

Carbohydrates serve as the primary fuel source for high-intensity workouts, and by incorporating them strategically, we can optimize our performance, enhance recovery, and support muscle growth. 

This is especially important for career-driven moms who are juggling multiple responsibilities and need the energy to stay active and productive.

I believe that finding a sustainable way of eating is crucial for long-term success. 

Diets that are overly restrictive or unsustainable often lead to feelings of deprivation and can result in cycles of yo-yo dieting. 

By adopting a low carb or carb cycling approach, you can strike a healthy balance between achieving you health goals and enjoying the foods we love. 

This promotes a positive and healthy relationship with food, which is essential for long-term adherence and overall well-being.

So, based on everything I shared with you in this video, "Which approach resonates more with your lifestyle – low carb or keto? 

Drop a comment below, and let's continue the conversation!

And if you're still uncertain about which path to take, check out my Carb Cycling Cheat Sheet. 

It's specifically designed for working moms who want a sustainable and effective fat loss strategy without sacrificing carbs. 

The link is in the description.

Now, if you’re curious about if keto is safe for women, go watch my next video in this Keto For Women Series where I reveal the truth about the safety of the keto diet for women.

I’ll see you there